Tom LaSorda brings a new type of management at Fisker

Article by Christian Andrei, on April 10, 2012

If Fisker Automotive doesn’t get the federal loan money to produce its next model, the Atlantic, then it will have to find another plant (which may not be within the U.S. at all), according to its CEO Tom LaSorda. The unveiling of the Atlantic’s prototype was made right before the New York Auto Show opened. LaSorda, who was the CEO of Chrysler, was interviewed that night.

He said that the start-up electric vehicle manufacturer is waiting to federal money for it to outfit the former General Motors plant in Wilmington, Del. He referred to this funding as its “primary choice.” During a testing conducted by Consumer Reports, the Fisker Karma shut down on its own. Fisker engineers determined that it was due to a battery pack defect.

LaSorda said that to find the manufacturing glitch, he spent 3.5 hours at the Detroit plant of battery maker A123 Systems. LaSorda said that the company shouldered the replacement cost. Talks with the U.S. Department of Energy are continuing over Fisker’s Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing Loan, which had been put on hold after Fisker failed to meet production targets.

The company is preparing to proceed without the loan. He said that he had addressed the company and told them to assume that they won’t get the loan, according to Autonews. He expressed interest in making alliances with other automakers for the Atlantic production.

This is a sporty sedan that will be powered by a new version of the plug-in hybrid powertrain in the Karma, the company's first car. LaSorda said that there will definitely be talks with another companies. He added that the company has raised about $1 billion in private-equity funding (which include $132 million in March) for the Atlantic to enter production. Fisker officials declined to give details about the price, timetable, or projections in terms of volume.

Topics: fisker

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